Scientology teaches that when something tragic and horrible happens in one’s life it is because they “pulled it in”. Somehow, due to hidden “crimes” in a distant past life, a person earned the cosmic karma of illness, misfortune or loss.
COS also claims it can remove the grief and pain from such experiences from one’s mind.
Lisa Marie Presley’s raw, heartrending essay as she struggles with the loss of her son clearly challenges both of these beliefs held by her former “church”.
There are other subtle suggestions of her past affiliation with Scientology; “You can feel stigmatized and perhaps judged in some way as to why the tragic loss took place. This becomes magnetized by a million if you are the parent of a child who passed. No matter how old they were. No matter the circumstances…
“…but others will judge and blame you too, even secretly or behind your back which is even more cruel and painful on top of everything else.”
What right minded person with even a modicum of compassion would judge or blame a parent for an adult child’s suicide? Truly Scientology is the only cold hearted entity who would ascribe blame in such a way.
As Presley grieves she does so from an emotionally handicapped position. Being indoctrinated by COS’ unhealthy doctrines she now must find her way through her incredible pain and deal, even subconsciously, with Scientology’s toxic legacy.
Losing a child or loved one to suicide comes with its own set of unique challenges. Having lost both a younger brother and stepfather in this way, I am sadly experienced.
Having been raised in an intolerant, Catholic pre-Vatican II household, it was drilled into me that suicides go to Hell. In spite of this a small, defiant part of my heart refused to believe that a loving God would so treat such a lost soul.
How comforting it was then when the Provincial Superior of my former convent told me “This is not what the Catholic Church teaches”.
Mother M. Ingeborg, OSF was the Superior for the entire American Province of our Order. I was in awe of her and filled with the utmost respect for her both as a fellow Catholic and as my Superior.
She KNEW because she was a leader in my Faith.
Not only did her words comfort me but they validated that stifled voice inside me.
Mike Rinder’s tweet to Lisa Marie Presley was not an attack, not mean spirited. Out of all the messages of support Presley received, for someone who had been part of the highest echelon of Sea Org executives to both praise her thoughts as well as support them so publicly should mean something.
Rinder was not just anyone, he was THE protector, defender and attack dog. He was respected (perhaps feared?) in his position and his words had weight.
Given that they now share COS’ painful, abusive legacy, the idea that he would in any way intend to hurt Lisa Marie or otherwise use her grief against her is ludicrous.
By stating that her essay reveals beliefs that Scientology does not espouse he is validating her feelings as well as saying “you are free to grieve and I see your struggle”.
Mike Rinder KNOWS because he was a leader in her former “faith”. He more than anyone understands the intricacies of the belief system that adds unhealthy weight to the already unbearable load on her shoulders.
“You know of course this is contrary to what #scientology teaches”.
He doesn’t disrespect her intelligence. Rinder acknowledges that she already knows the toxic ideology that Scientology instills into its members.
Rather than a negative, could it not be that he was trying to remind her why she left the organization? Could he be telling her “here you are, free to express the reality of your loss without blame, shame or censor. This is not what Scientology teaches.”
Presley’s article is REAL. It was written by her broken heart. Sharing her pain with others, she teaches others that grief is permitted.
Contrary to what Scientology teaches.
I, of course, cannot presume to speak for what Mike was truly thinking when he posted his tweet, but I can reasonably extrapolate from my own interactions with him that being inappropriate or insensitive was the furthest thing from his mind.
From one former Scientologist to another Mike was reaching out in support of Lisa Marie Presley, letting her know “I hear you” in the unique way only someone who has shared trauma can.
Do not be so quick to judge someone’s motives. Especially when it is so difficult to understand from the outside what it truly means to be an ex Scientologist. While Rinder’s tweet was public, because there is the common denominator of Scientology between them, it might be best to not judge something so complex, so personal and so enigmatic as the damage done by L. Ron Hubbard’s legacy.